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Cruise News This Week

Last updated on April 19th, 2024 at 07:22 pm

Welcome aboard! Dive into the latest cruise adventures on our weekly-updated news page. Discover insider tips, destination highlights, and exclusive insights into the world of cruising. Stay ahead with the freshest updates on upcoming voyages, onboard experiences, and industry trends. Whether you're a seasoned cruiser or planning your maiden voyage, our curated content ensures you're always in the know.
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Week Of April 15, 2024

Did You Know? That Royal Caribbean’s Enchantment of the Seas propulsion motor is equivalent to 17,000 vacuum cleaners. 

Royal Caribbean Announces Two Ships for Australia in 2025-26

Anthem of the Seas and Voyager of the Seas will sail a series of 45 seasonal voyages to Australia and ports farther afield in the South Pacific. It will be Anthem’s first voyage to the area.

The ships will be based in Australia from November 2025 until April 2026 and will sail from Sydney and Brisbane, respectively.

Anthem will offer an 11-night New Year’s cruise that departs from Sydney December 28, 2025 and visits Picton, Napier, Tauranga and Auckland. 

Voyager provides a choice of 20 various cruises, including a new destination for Royal Caribbean, Luganville. Luganville is Vanuatu’s second largest city known for its Pacific Island culture and white sand beaches. 

New Cruise Ships Ordered and New Ships Received

In a sign that the cruising industry is thriving, several cruise lines have added or ordered new ships to their lines. 

MSC cruise line reached a major milestone with two new World-class ships, World America and World Asia, added to their fleet. 

MSC World America was recently floated out of dry dock. Entering the final phase of construction, the second ship, MSC World Asia, will be completed in France. 

Norwegian Cruise Lines has ordered eight new ships for each of its three brands. This is the most comprehensive newbuild order in Norwegian’s history. 

The eight new ships represent almost 25,000 additional berths. Norwegian is also constructing a multi-ship pier at Great Stirrup Cay, its private island destination in the Bahamas. 

Norwegian will be accepting the eight new ships over a ten-year period from 2026 to 2036.

Not to be left behind, Windstar Cruises will be welcoming two new ships to its fleet, the Star Seeker and the Star Explorer. 

The Star Seeker is currently under construction and Windstar expects to take delivery in December 2025. The Star Explorer will join the fleet a year later in December 2026. 

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Carnival cruise line unveils Lokono Cove for Celebration Key

The latest addition of Carnival’s private destination, Celebration Key on Grand Bahama Island, is Lokono Cove.

The name, Lokono, is a homage to the Lucayans, the island’s original inhabitants.

The Cove will feature a variety of stores and kiosks that feature a range of retail items. You will find souvenirs and fine jewelry and everything in between at the Cove. 

The Celebration Key port is specifically for Carnival Corporation cruise ships.

This will include Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises and the Cunard Line. 

Week of April 8, 2024

Did You Know? That the first cruise ship swimming pool was on White Star Line’s Adriatic in 1906? It was not much more than a deep rectangle filled with water that was surrounded by a glass partition.

Flying Standby? Consider Cruising Standby!

If you are a traveler that has a great deal of flexibility, travels light and can pivot in an instant, Holland America might have a deal for you. Your departure notice may be only 48 hours, but if you live nearby or can get to the port quickly, your reward is a bargain rate of $49 per person per day on their standby cruise.

Currently, embarkation ports include Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Montreal, Quebec City; San Diego, Seattle, Vancouver, British Columbia, and Whittier, Alaska. Expect an inside cabin, although there might be times when ocean-view cabins are offered.

There are no refunds for standby cruisers if you decide to back out. However, if Holland America cannot offer a cabin to someone on the standby list, you will get your money refunded.

For an adventure that awaits, go here: Standby List Program | Holland America Line

Looking Ahead: Visit Six Continents In 2027

Luxury cruise line Regent Seven Seas has an impressive 140-night cruise being offered in 2027. The Seven Seas Splendor will leave Miami on January 11th and travel to 40 countries across six continents.

The 746 passenger cruise will travel through the Panama Canal to the Caribbean, across the Pacific to Australia and New Zealand. The ship will then visit Asia, Africa and Europe. The final stopping point will be in New York just about five months from the initial sailing.

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Beginning April 10, 2024, you can book your cruise on the Seven Seas Splendor here: https://www.rssc.com/2027-World-Cruise

 

Travel Like A Princess

 

An inventive partnership between intercity train company Brightline and Princess Cruises enable passengers to access ships departing from Port Canaveral and Fort Lauderdale.

The “Rail & Sail” program offers convenient transportation and a value-added luggage express service offering guests the ultimate convenience. Passengers’ bags are checked at their Brightline station and will be waiting for them securely in their stateroom upon arrival to the ship.

Princess guests can also enjoy special discounts of up to 15% when booking Smart and Premium Rail & Sail packages through Brightline’s website.

Guests will be able to access Brightline’s full schedule of trains departing daily with 16 round-trip transits between Orlando and Fort Lauderdale.

Week of April 1, 2024

Did You Know? That the anchor on Disney Magic weighs the same as three full-grown elephants? The anchor is a whopping 28,200 pounds and each individual link weighs up to 130 pounds apiece!

Francis Scott Key Bridge Tragedy

The recent collapse of the Francis Scott Key bridge in Baltimore is a tragedy for those who lost their lives while working on the bridge. It is also going to be an economic disaster as the city struggles to remove the broken bridge from the Patapsco River.

The cleanup goal is to remove enough debris to clear a portion of the shipping channel. They are striving to open up a lane for traffic to flow in and out of the port. At this point, experts say it will take weeks, if not months, to clear the debris to allow for vessel passage. .

Cruise lines who visit the port, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and American Cruises will be looking for alternatives for upcoming sailings.  Carnival Cruise Line has temporarily moved its Baltimore operations to Norfolk, Virginia.

Cruise Lines International Association, the largest cruise industry trade association, says 12 cruise ships made 115 trips through Baltimore in 2024. And in 2023, about 444,000 cruise passengers moved through the port, the 29th largest in the U.S.

Royal Caribbean To Open New Beach Club In Cozumel

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The world’s largest cruise line, Royal Caribbean, is expanding their destination lineup with Royal Beach Club Cozumel in Mexico, opening in 2026. The future location of the beach club is located on the western coast of the island.

As part of Royal Caribbean’s Royal Beach Club Collection, the new experience in Cozumel will include swim-up bars, dedicated pools for families, private cabanas, snorkeling, kayaking and beautiful beaches.

A variety of dining spots will also be available, including a restaurant, bar and lounge with views, as well as a street market and hands-on experiences like tequila tastings and cooking classes.

Coming up in Royal Caribbean International’s destination lineup is Royal Beach Club Cozumel in Mexico, opening in 2026. The next ultimate beach day experience in the Royal Beach Club Collection will complement all that Cozumel has to offer with a combination of experiences for everyone, from striking beaches and pools to swim-up bars, a variety of dining spots like a restaurant, bar and lounge as well as a street market; and hands-on experiences such as tequila tastings and cooking classes.
Artist’s rendering of future Royal Beach Club Cozumel. 

Florida Permits Larger Cruise Ships in Key West Over Local Objections

Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis on Tuesday approved a new long-term lease for a pier in Key West. This makes it possible for larger cruise ships to call at the popular port.

While this is good news for cruisers, there have been ongoing objections of the majority of the residents of the resort town. This approval is the latest step in a multi-year battle between environmental groups supported by local residents and the state government to reduce the size and number of cruise ships docking in the port.

Environmentalists continue to complain about the impact of cruise ships on the reef and waters of Key West. They objected and were able to get Pier B cited for lease violations due to the size of the ships.

The groups also contend that DEP officials “have not inspected the docks since 2019,” despite their complaints about harm from sediment spread by the cruise ships.

The City Commission can continue to impose the limits on the pier which it controls. The local groups are saying this latest action demonstrates the need for federal management to preserve the environment.

 

 

 

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About Jonathon Hyjek

Jonathon is the tech guy behind CruiseportAdvisor.com. When he's not stuck in front of his computer, Jonathon enjoys travel & cruising (even after being on a cruise ship that caught fire - a story for another day!)

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